Stop picking on farmers

Does anyone else feel that since the release a few week’s ago of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s latest report, that everyone has been picking on farmers – particularly of livestock. It seems as though it’s perfectly acceptable to drive around in a three and a half litre Range Rover or hop on  a plane to Dubai but trying to make a living from farming is akin to dealing class A drugs.

I’ve always had a bit of a problem buying into the anti-ruminant/ bovine flatulence argument. Allegedly, before Europeans crossed the Atlantic, there were forty five million bison roaming the prairies and I’m sure there were similar numbers of other ruminants on the savannah/steppes/pampas throughout the world. What would they be saying if we hadn’t shot or domesticated them?

Yes, the world’s burgeoning middle classes demand for meat is a concern but so is their need for Chelsea tractors and overseas travel, so let’s keep it in perspective.

So it was a relief when my wife showed me this tweet from a very talkative farmer in Ireland

Yes, it’s a little over simplified but so are the arguments from the other side.